P2P lender CommunityLend launches in Ontario
12 January 2010 | 6503 views | 1
Canadian online peer-to-peer lending service CommunityLend has launched in Ontario ahead of a planned national roll out.
Plans for the site were initially revealed in 2007 when the founders - including noted banking blogger Colin Henderson - predicted it would go live by the end of that year.
However, with the nascent P2P lending model raising regulatory concerns, CommunityLend has held back the launch.
Rival Canadian offering IOU Central was forced to halt operations less than a month after launching when regulators in Quebec ordered the unit to close down. It is still not operating in the country.
Now, after what CEO Michael Garrity calls a "long road", CommunityLend has opened its doors to borrowers and lenders resident in the province of Ontario. New provinces and territories are expected to be added in the "coming months".
The site lets people with strong credit histories request to borrow between C$1000 and C$25,0000 directly from private individual and institutional investors.
Lenders, who must be "accredited investors", can then bid to offer a portion of the loan request - at least C$100. If the loan request is filled, the borrower can either close it or allow new lenders to outbid existing offers with better interest rates and monthly payments.